Tech & Communications

Qatari enterprises risk failure if their network infrastructure is not upgraded

by  — 12 July 2013

Brocade, a leading networking vendor, today announced the results of its global survey of 1,750 IT decision makers which evaluated the current state of their data center environments.

An overwhelmingly large number of respondents (91 percent) have revealed that they do not believe that their current IT infrastructures are equipped to meet the demands of cloud computing and virtualisation. 

This global trend is especially worrying for businesses in Qatar wherein cloud related IT investments are expected to expand in the next five years. According to a report on ‘Qatar’s ICT Landscape 2013’ published by ictQATAR, 34 percent of establishments that are aware of cloud computing say that they intend to adopt it. Nimer Ghazal, country manager, Qatar at Brocade Communications said, “Qatari businesses are known to be early adopters of technology and are highly likely to be among the leaders in the region to welcome cloud computing. The rapid uptake of virtualisation is proof of this. However, many of these organizations risk long term failure as only small fractions of their IT budgets are spent on network infrastructure and this too is limited to merely scaling up legacy networks.”

He continued, “Unless there is a change in mindset and willingness to consider the long term implications, businesses are likely to see long term complications.” Ghazal’s concerns are confirmed by the report which states that a third of businesses experience multiple network failures each week, with as high as 16 percent complaining of daily network outages. These are caused largely due to database applications (41 percent), communication tools (30 percent) and Microsoft Office programs (25 percent) as new services such as video conferencing and application delivery to remote devices add to the strain on already unfit networks.

Tied in to the concerns of loss of productivity due to downtime, over half of the survey’s respondents reported that network failure has either directly or indirectly resulted in financial impact.

Ghazal believes that Qatari enterprises need to invest in purpose-built data centers that offer high flexibility to meet with varying pressures. “In slow periods such as in the summer months and during Ramadan, business in Qatar slows down and the amount of data being handled by the network decreases. Correspondingly, in peak times, traffic volumes can peak and cause networks to fail. Brocade understands this elasticity which is why we are promoting our On-Demand Data Center strategy. This helps combine the best of physical and virtual networking elements to create a data center environment that helps organization rapidly react to market changes and deploy new services and applications in the most efficient manner possible. We have based our technologies on open standards, thus paving the way for incorporation of new technologies such as Software-Defined Networking (SDN) into these networks.”

Brocade’s focus in Qatar has been primarily on growing its data center business wherein it has the advantage of being one of only two companies globally with technologies across all four areas - application networking, virtualisation, infrastructure and storage. Key to growth of the company’s market share will be the uptake of fabric-based technologies. 18 percent of survey respondents already use fabric-based networks, and 51 percent planning to roll out Ethernet fabrics in the next year in order to support virtualisation plans.

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